Dental Sleep Medicine Insider March 2017 - Page 22



Connecting Beyond the Dots

W e all know that Sleep-Related Breathing Disorders are a silent health epidemic that touches every corner of this country . The problem is very real and yet many of the patients we see every day are totally unaware they are in danger . As practitioners , we know that OSA and other Sleep-Related Breathing Disorders are commonly associated with very serious medical conditions like obesity , alzheimer ’ s , diabetes , hypertension , heart-failure , and stroke . That ’ s why screening and testing are crucial .

But herein lies the problem : how do we get patients to see how serious OSA and other Sleep-Related Breathing Disorders are ? Many dentists screen their patients but struggle getting them to agree to testing .
The Struggle is Real
What is your screening procedure ? Do you hand the patient a tablet when they are sitting in the chair ? Do you ask them fill out a form online ? A clipboard with the screening questions before their appointment ? How successful is your process ?
This is an important step . However , it ’ s not the end . You MUST connect with the patient .
You already talk to them about their families . You know the names of their children because you treat them . If you want them to understand how important healthy sleep is to their life , you need to ask them personally . It shows how important their health is to you , as their dentist and care provider . This disrupts their thinking . A dentist asking them about things that are not directly related to the dental health . It makes him stop and think . This is different . This is important .
Asking the screening questions personally does a very important thing . It shows the patient that you actually care about their health and about them as an individual . They are not a number but a real person , patient whose health and wellbeing matter . You care about their health . You care about their life . Knowing that you care will open their minds to hearing about treatment options . Your conversation about treatment will be real . You are not selling something , you are helping people .
Being Real .
It ’ s a simple but very important distinction in your screening process . Ask the questions in person . It shows that you care . You

Dr . Roy Novick D . D . S .

Dr . Novick is the National Clinical Trainer and Advisor for N3Sleep . Originally from Mount Vernon , NY , Dr . Novick graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a Bachelor ’ s Degree in Natrual Science , as well as a Doctorate of Dental Surgery from Georgetown University . Dr . Novick had a highly successful private practice in Northern Virginia for 35 years . He regularly attends advanced sleep seminars and lectures and provides dental sleep training and consulting services to practices across the U . S .
want to help them live healthier lives . We do this to help people . As dentists , we care about every patient . We want them to be healthy and live healthy full lives - with beautiful smiles of course . And the thing is , you smile more when you ’ re well rested and in good health . Sleep medicine is one more way to help your patients smile more . Be real .